In light of there being reports of drug shortages at the Skeldon Hospital in Region Six, physicians attached to the Accident and Emergency (A&E) department of the health facility on Monday staged a “sit in” and refused to see patients.
According to the medical practitioners- most of whom are attached to the A&E Unit of the health facility- it would prove to be useless to even attempt to carry out their duties as the hospital has no medication, gloves or other basic medical supplies.
A limping patient, Rajindra Shivnarine of Number 75 Village, Berbice, who was denied the hospital’s service and told this online publication that he was told to come back another time.
Furthermore, Executive member of the Guyana Public Service Union (GPSU), Ram Mangru visited the location after he learnt of the sit-in.
However, he noted while the staff of the hospital have shown their willingness to continue protesting until solutions are met, the GPSU, he said, could not advise them on a way forward unless it holds discussions with Regional Officials.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Public Health (MOPH) Permanent Secretary, Collette Adams and other Ministry officials say they “are mystified by Monday’s industrial action by the Skeldon Hospital physicians” since according to Adams, “the hospital received supplies from the Materials Management Unit (MMU) last Thursday.”
“She said further, no hospital authority or the doctors complained to the Ministry or the Union about shortage of supplies at the A&E,” a press statement from the Ministry explained.
The ‘sit-in’ didn’t disrupt operations in other parts of the hospital according to Alex Foster, the point person for the Public Health Ministry in Region Six.
Foster said A&E physicians were upset that critical supplies were unavailable to treat their patients forcing them to take industrial action.
Nevertheless, it was disclosed that a high-level meeting is planned for tomorrow (Tuesday) following today’s strike action.
Furthermore, the MOPH release noted that “medical supplies are expected to be transported to the Skeldon Hospital on Tuesday morning.”